New data from the EU’s Copernicus Climate Service reported 2019 was the warmest on record in Europe, although for the world as a whole it has previously been reported that 2019 was the second warmest.
Many places across the continent saw temperature peaks that were 3-4C warmer than normal with the number of ‘sunshine hours’ recorded the highest ever.
The hot summer was followed by one of the autumns on record, particularly in November when rainfall almost four times the average in western and southern Europe.
Among other findings were that July 2019 was the warmest month ever. The service also reported that 11 of the 12 warmest years on record in Europe have occurred since 2000 and that temperatures in the past five years have been on average one degree warmer than a century ago.
“Europe has indeed been warming significantly faster than the global average,” Prof Rowan Sutton, director of science (climate) at the UK’s National Centre for Atmospheric Science, told the BBC, adding,
“This is for two reasons. First, land regions in general are warming faster than the oceans, largely because the greater availability of moisture over the oceans damps the rate of warming. Secondly, reductions in specific forms of air pollution have contributed to the recent warming in Europe, particularly in summer.”